When it comes to ingredients, I have no higher expectation than that of the quality of the August tomato. This is the veggie that can not and will not ever let me down. It has to be perfect every single time. And its my job to make that tomato baby shine.
I'm sort of a homemade elitist. Even I find myself pretty annoying when I can hear the way I talk about how so many things are better when they're made from scratch (they are, but no one cares Mandy)..
At the end of every summer, our church would hold a park picnic to eat great food, raise money for building restorations, and honestly just celebrate being Armenian. Highlights included competitive oriental rug raffles, interesting musical offerings, 4,000 pieces of baklava, and someone trying to arrange a marriage between Hillary and a man fresh off the boat.
I'm big into the recommended guidelines for sleep, so for 10 months of the year, my bedtime is promptly 9:30 PM. This is probably because I'm up at the crack of dawn to spend a full day hanging out with 15 year olds... a task that definitely requires a full 8 hours if you want to retain your sanity.
I'm pretty weird about dessert. When summer rolls around, I feel morally obligated to take advantage of seasonal produce at it's finest, and so this means I should be whipping up cobblers and pies and galettes. Only problem is, I don't actually love any of this stuff.
As Hillary previously called me out for my one pan recipe week, she was correct in that I was merely being lazy and unmotivated to cook. No one is down for a cumbersome cooking project more than I am, but some weeks, I have absolutely no desire to be tied to my kitchen. This generally starts to happen when the sun is out, and I long for a grill, and a patio, and a yard to lay in... the list goes on. Always a lady with needs.
We come from a family of pretty serious gardeners. We grew up watching corn, cherry tomatoes, peppers, zucchini and cucumbers sprout up on the hill in our backyard. And while the planning and maintenance of the garden was never really our responsibility, fighting over who got to pick the ripe veggies was a common argument, typically resulting in the plucking of some orange tomatoes and not-yet-ripe baby cucumbers.
Seven years ago I started working at a seafood restaurant that was owned by the family of one of my closest friends. I knew very little about food at that point. So little, in fact, that when a cook asked me if I wanted fried, sautéed, or broiled scallops I replied, “uh, which is better?”
My "colleagues" wear clothes from Abercrombie & Fitch, obsess over flipping water bottles, and talk in a language that I work hard to understand. I'm an English teacher, and yes I consider my students to be my colleagues.
I won't lie to you, this one really came out of left field. I had seen recipes for different pumpkin + pasta combinations, and every time I thought.. but why? It always seemed excessive. Like every chicken bacon pesto alfredo ranch pasta Tasty video I hate-watch. Why do you really NEED to do that? And then, I figured it out.
Is PB&J nostalgic for everyone? To be honest, we rarely ate it growing up. We were much more the 'turkey sandwich with 2-3 Oreos and a bag of baby carrots' kind of crew. There was a solid period of time that Kate would only eat mayonnaise and cheese sandwiches, which I'd truly like to forget about.
What is better than a summer tomato? Absolutely nothing. The tomato is a favorite of sisters #1 & #2. And while we try to wear down #3 and convince her of the greatness of a raw tomato, we continue to slowly indoctrinate her with recipes like this.
When you grow up surrounded by family, traditions like Sunday dinner, family birthday parties, and sleepovers at your grandparents house are common. Among countless memories, a handful stick out that we look back on now with so much fondness.
When we were little, I always woke up earlier than my sisters. I love the morning and I've never been a great sleeper, so I had to find ways to occupy my time until they were available to entertain me. In retrospect, this is probably why they stayed in bed longer.
Netflix is really upping it's game with their cooking show collection. Not much makes me emotional, but watching women in huts kneading dough in giant ceramic bowls in the middle of Morocco gets me pretty worked up.
I know what you're thinking. Why are you making a whole post about baby onions? Is that really the best use of our time? Does anyone really love onions that much? Yes, and we're 'bout to show you how much you love onions.